Advertising
Advertising

How to Record Video Like a Pro with Your Smartphone

How to Record Video Like a Pro with Your Smartphone

Nowadays, individuals can become master videographers simply with the gadgets they have in their pockets every day: their cell phones. With smartphones, including the iPhone 5, having the ability to shoot up to 1080p video quality, your videos can compete very well with the likes of some DSLR and point-and-shoot cameras. While I am not going to convince you to post your DSLR on eBay, I will show you today how the average consumer can find value in the video quality their own smartphone’s possess, without having to spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars on more gadgets.

Understanding the Pixels

image1_videography

    In videography, the most common options for resolutions are 240p, 480p, 720p, and 1080p. The “p” at the end stands for “pixel” and refers to the resolution that the device or camera can capture. The higher the pixel-age, the better the quality. Unlike photography, where megapixels aren’t necessarily appreciated past a certain degree (like 12-15 megapixels) unless the photo is blown up or highly processed, video resolution changes are more apparent. The resolution of a 720p and 1080p video is noticeably different from a 480p video. This is important to consider if you are looking into using your smartphone for specific cinematographic purposes.

    Why Lighting Counts

    Advertising

    light difference

      Have you ever wondered why your phone is horrible with handling light? Your subject may look overly saturated (too much light) or inaccurately darker on camera. This all deals with your phone camera’s aperture size.

      Aperture translates to how much light your lens lets in: the larger the aperture, the more light is let in, which equals an improved image quality. Since our cameras are small on our phones, their lens are small as well, which means that not as much light is let inwe have to adjust and consider adding our own lighting when making use of our phone’s video capabilities.

      You don’t have to have studio lighting on hand: achieving good lighting on the fly involves making use of sunlight correctly with outdoor video and knowing when to use lamps while indoors. Flash is something that should be used as a last resort: flashes often give off a florescent light, which is what washes out the skin of your subject in a video. Plus, when used continuously when shooting a video, it can kill your battery life. Use flash only when you’re in a place of very little to no lighting.

      Go to Your Subject

      Advertising

      image2_videography

        In videography, your main concern is to ensure that quality is maintained to prevent  the quality from decreasing even more post-production. One surefire way to reduce your video quality is by using zoom. Unlike a DSLR camera, where you have a detachable, zoom lens that adjusts like a microscope (optical zoom), the zoom on most camera phones simply magnify the image at hand (digital zoom). This leads to pixelationa reduction in video quality.

        Instead of zooming in, you should go to the subject you are attempting to focus on. While I was in Costa Rica this spring, when I wanted to take a video of a Macaw, I found placing my iPhone lens in front of binoculars allowed the binocular lens to act as the perfect form of zoom without manipulating the quality. This may be a great idea to look into if you must take a video of a subject that’s far away.

        iPhone Hacks

        Your iPhone camera comes with features on board that can help you ensure that your videos come out clear and organized. The first iPhone trick is the ability to lock the autofocus and white balance in your video. This is helpful if your subject is stationary, for example in an interview or to shoot macro video shots. To lock in autofocus and white balance, simply press and hold on the screen on the subject at hand. Do this until the bottom of the camera screen says AF/WB Lock.

        If you have the iPhone 5, you are able to take photos while making a video. Simply click the camera button at the upper right hand corner of the screen while the iPhone is recording. The third trick for video capture on iPhone is the ability to trim your video after recording. To do so, simply click either end of the top of the screen that shows the video progression. You’ll then see it turn yellow, allowing you to shorten the clip as much or as little as possible. While these hacks are cool and all, you may be looking for a bit more. No worries, we have four apps that offer extra features.

        Advertising

        Your Mobile Camera Bag

        Below are three applications that are very helpful with video editing, transformation, and sharing.

        imovie 1
          imovie 2

            iMovie
            – If you are looking to go above and beyond what your iPhone can do with video out of the box, iMovie is the safe choice to go with while still sticking with Apple-made programs. iMovie, working in a similar way with the desktop version, for iOS allows you to piece together multiple clips, add audio, templates, and more. This is all possible without even touching a computer. Plus, the ability to send to YouTube and other sharing websites makes for $4.99 price tag easy to swallow.

            stopmotion 1
              stopmotion 2

                StopMotion Recorder – StopMotion is when you make use of photographs to piece

                Advertising

                together a movie clip. StopMotion Recorder makes this easy to do while on the go. You can make use of audio, time-interval automatic shooting, add styles, adjust frame speed, and even take advantage of the app’s sharing options. $0.99.

                youtube capture
                  youtube capture 2

                    YouTube Capture – YouTube is the one-stop shop for just about any hot video on YouTube. Hundreds and thousands of video creators go onto YouTube to show off their talents, with millions of videos created from various formats. YouTube Capture allows you to easily get your video out while on the go. Plus, this offers an uploading option and customizability that isn’t available with iOS 6.

                    Your smartphone can unleash multiple ways in which you can make your videos turn into cinematic masterpieces. While you won’t have the features that come with DSLRs, like manual focusing and scene selections, the iPhone and other mobile devices are moving toward a trend where the quality isn’t too far from larger cameras. Since 2011, as seen with movies like Olive and The Swarm, Hollywood is catching on to this mobile trend. Let us know in the comments below on how you’ve been able to transform how you capture video while on the go.

                    More by this author

                    10 Meal Planning Apps You Need To Have To Get Healthier Easily The 50 Best Desktop Wallpapers for 2013 23 Awesome Travel Hacks That Add Fun To Your Trip How to Stay in Good Shape During Black Friday 9 Apps Unrelated to Black Friday That Are Helpful

                    Trending in Technology

                    1 10 Best VPNs to Browse the Internet More Securely 2 10 Best Monitors for Your PC Under $100 3 10 Best Spy Apps for iPhone in 2020 4 How To Choose The Best iPad Screen Protector (With 10 Recommendations) 5 10 Best Headsets for Video Chats and Conference Calls

                    Read Next

                    Advertising
                    Advertising
                    Advertising

                    Published on September 25, 2020

                    10 Best VPNs to Browse the Internet More Securely

                    10 Best VPNs to Browse the Internet More Securely

                    When it comes to digital security, public Wi-Fi networks aren’t safe enough, making it much easier for hackers to access your personal data. Whether you are studying in a library or scrolling through Facebook in a coffeehouse, it is vital to have a VPN installed on your device.

                    VPNs work wonders when it comes to securing your internet connection. By creating an encrypted tunnel between a remote server run by the VPN service, they protect your personal data from prying eyes. There is a variety of VPNs available on the web, and we have collated a list of the best VPNs that stand out from the rest.

                    How to Choose a VPN

                    • Free trial period – Free trials allow you to try the product risk-free. The same idea technically applies to those with 30-day full refunds as well.
                    • Speed – You want your VPN to be just as fast as the internet speed at home. Good quality VPNs are ones where you see little difference between those speeds.
                    • Device connection – Of course, the more devices that can connect to VPNs, the better. It increases the customers’ coverage and the product’s value. You also want to consider compatibility since fewer VPNs may work for Mac or Windows only.
                    • Number of servers – The number of servers determines how much capacity a VPN can handle while you are connected. The more servers there are, the more users it can handle without running into potential disconnections or slow speeds.
                    • Kill switch feature – Having this feature means that your IP address isn’t exposed if the VPN disconnects for some reason. A lack of this feature is a big deal since the whole reason why you’re paying for a VPN is to hide your IP address, among other things. (Find out how to avoid getting tracked online here: Big Brother Is Watching You Online: How To Avoid Being Tracked)

                    Why You Should Trust Us

                    Our hand-picked VPNs are incredibly efficient and offer such distinctive features that grant you safe browsing. They outperform many VPNs in terms of both speed and security. Their primary aim is to provide you the utmost security, thus enabling you to surf the web safely and prevent any potential threat from causing harm.

                    Among the best VPNs’ many unique features include split tunneling, strict logging policies, high encryption level, and availability of international servers. We have gathered them in this article to enlighten our readers and offer the best pieces of advice before you get one. Therefore, take our word for it, and if you go for a VPN mentioned below, you’d be fully appeased.

                    1. NordVPN

                    The most popular VPN on the market these days is NordVPN, and it’s easy to see why. It has widespread coverage, offering a selection of over 5,000 servers spanning across 59 countries.[1] Due to the high number of servers, its speed is similar to your Wi-Fi at home.

                    Lifehack’s CEO, Leon, has been using NordVPN for many years and wants to recommend it for its remarkable server count in different locations with no-logs policy. The VPN perfectly works with Netflix and Fire TV stick, too.

                    NordVPN is also compatible with Mac, Windows, and Linux. You can download the app onto Chrome, Firefox, Android, and Mac OS. Thanks to its massive coverage, it’s easy to connect multiple devices onto these servers.

                    In terms of pricing, while NordVPN doesn’t have a free trial period, they argue that their plans are considerably cheaper than those of their competitors. For example, a one-year plan for ExpressVPN costs $8.32 per month, but NordVPN only charges $6.99 monthly.

                    NordVPN has a new protocol called NordLynx that is based on WireGuard with speed benefits, though it’s still under development.[2] If you’re looking for general quality and affordability, this is one of the best VPNs around.

                    Buy this VPN.

                    Advertising

                    2. ExpressVPN

                    ExpressVPN is the second-best option out there for keeping your privacy while browsing the internet. Like many other VPNs here, they will encrypt your IP address, offer vast coverage, and can have multiple devices connected to their servers.

                    Compared to NordVPN, while the pricing point is higher, ExpressVPN’s biggest selling point is the number of countries that their connection covers. Depending on where you are in the world, this may be the only option you have. They have fewer servers — 160, to be precise — but they make up for the low server count by covering 94 countries.[3]

                    Cost-wise, your best bet is to go with the yearly plan where they charge $8.32 a month. They also have one- and six-month plans.

                    Buy this VPN.

                    3. Surf Shark

                    With regards to Surf Shark, you can connect multiple devices to its servers, and it’s compatible with Windows, Linux, and Mac. It is also available on Android, iOS, Chrome, Firefox, and FireTV.

                    Furthermore, Surf Shark can whitelist apps and sites, letting them bypass the VPN. This, along with the lines of split-tunneling, is another feature that many VPNs offer. The difference is that Surf Shark allows you to whitelist specific apps or any website, while most VPNs will whitelist all sites or none at all.

                    The other consideration for this app is the price. While lower-tier plans are more expensive compared to others, Surf Shark’s 24-month plan is priced at $2.69 a month, so it’s cheaper than even NordVPN’s equivalent plan!

                    Buy this VPN.

                    4. CyberGhost

                    Another top-reviewed VPN is CyberGhost. They’ve been around for 15 years and have fine-tuned their offers and features to stay competitive. They provide the standard package of browsing the web and logging into accounts safely and give you access to regionally blocked content.

                    The network also maintains security from hackers, malware, and phishing. Aside from that, you can connect multiple devices, and it’s compatible with all kinds of platforms.

                    Advertising

                    What separates CyberGhost from the others is their extensive coverage. They have multiple servers, and the pricing point is still very low. It covers over 88 countries and has roughly 6200 servers for you to choose from, all while charging $2.75 for their 18-month plan.

                    Buy this VPN.

                    5. IPVanish

                    IPVanish’s prime purpose is to give users online freedom by providing fast speeds and private connections. It’s clear that they can meet that promise as they provide many of the features that have been listed previously from their competitors.

                    IPVanish is a part of SugarSync now. What is that, you may ask? It’s a cloud-based service that syncs files across devices and computers for sharing, backup, and many more. What this means is that other devices can access various files and videos so long as they are connected to your specific VPN. Furthermore, it can serve as a backup plan if you get hacked or lose your device for some reason.

                    Buy this VPN.

                    6. Private Internet Access

                    Private Internet Access (PIA) is a remarkably generous company in many ways. Aside from the obvious features, they offer great incentives and discounts for people to try out their products. They claim to be the most trustworthy and reliable VPN around, and we believe that.

                    One notable thing is that PIA offers a free two-month trial. Compared to other VPNs to this point, none have provided free trials (though all come with a 30-day money-back guarantee). On top of that, small businesses can avail of their VPN at a discounted rate. There is also the fact that their pricing plans go as low as $2.69 a month for two years, and they let you pay with gift cards.

                    In terms of specs, PIA has over 2695 servers that cover 47 countries right now.

                    These particular aspects make PIA unique and one of the best VPNs to consider.

                    Buy this VPN.

                    Advertising

                    7. Hotspot Shield

                    Hotspot Shield is all about offering protection while you’re browsing the internet or using streaming services like Netflix. The encryption is military-grade, and its speed is ultra-fast. In truth, it is even marketed as one of the fastest VPNs.

                    Hotspot Shield offers a plan that only costs  $7.99 a month; however, it’s one of the few in this list to provide its services for free. Like other Freemium apps, the free version comes with limited features. That said, it gives you a much better feel for the VPN.

                    Also, take note that the encryption feature is still there, though the limitations in the free plan include connecting to one location in the US and having limited streaming options and speed.

                    Buy this VPN.

                    8. TunnelBear

                    As unusual as a name choice for an online security protection service can be, TunnelBear is nothing short of incredible. It makes our list of the best VPNs for various reasons.

                    The biggest one is that the company goes through a yearly security audit. This is notable because many VPNs don’t bother about independent audits to ensure their systems are secure and safe from any issues. This is critical as VPNs have gotten some bad reputation over the years, as TunnelBear has noted in their post about their security audit.[4] The fact that they are doing this annually ensures that nothing is being compromised.

                    Furthermore, TunnelBear offers limited services for free, but even their paid plans are pretty cheap. For individuals, you’re merely paying $3.33 per month. The only catch is that you can connect five devices regardless of which paid plan you pick.

                    Buy this VPN.

                    9. Norton

                    Norton has been on the security scene for some time, and it’s actually one of the founders of the internet security industry. It started with virus and malware protection in 1991 and has since branched off to other sectors as the industry has shifted.

                    As you might expect from a company that’s been around for a long time, Norton provides excellent services, and a few of their other services have gone into the VPN package. In reality, Norton is the only one thus far to offer a password manager with their VPN services. They provide 50GB of cloud storage as well.

                    Advertising

                    Norton has one of the cheapest VPNs, considering you can get their deluxe plan at $49.99 per year. That comes up to roughly $4.17 a month. It might be slightly higher than other equivalent plans, but you get a lot of extra value that makes it worth the price.

                    Buy this VPN.

                    10. StrongVPN

                    The final VPN we want to cover is StrongVPN. Like many others, it’s great at blocking unnecessary web traffic and providing a fast and simple solution to navigating the internet without any hindrance.

                    StrongVPN has over 900 servers. It is available in more than 30 countries and compatible with all devices. Beyond that, the only notable selling point it has compared to others is that it also offers Sugarsync services and 250GB of storage, irrespective of your chosen plan.

                    As for the pricing, their year-long plan costs $5.83 a month, while their month-long one is $10.

                    Buy this VPN.

                    Bottom Line

                    Getting online protection is important these days, and companies recognize this.

                    With more hacks and breaches occurring every single day, the best VPNs can provide an excellent haven for many people who value their security and privacy.

                    We hope that by putting together this list, you’ll be able to find the best VPN that you can trust and enjoy using. As you can see, there are several great options with no real wrong one out there. Pick the VPN that’s best for you.

                    Featured photo credit: Petter Lagson via unsplash.com

                    Reference

                    Read Next